The House of Representatives is set to investigate the utilisation of the 165 billion Naira assigned to the Nigeria Correctional Service (NCS) in the past two years.
The resolution followed the adoption of a motion on ‘urgent national importance’ which focussed on the deplorable state of Inmates and the unwholesome working conditions of officers and men of the service despite huge budgetary allocations with attendant adverse effects on security of custodial facilities.
Leading debate on the motion, the Minority Leader, Mr.
Ndudi Elumelu said upon the enactment of the NCS Act 2019, Nigeria joined most countries in adopting modern correctional alternatives to incarcerate or imprison any one found wanting.
This includes non–custodial measures.
Quality of the service
Elumelu stated that despite the Act and increase in budgetary allocations to the NCS to drive its renewed mandate, the tempo, and quality of the service had remained the same.
“Observed that the Arms Squad unit of the Service still parades obsoletes and substandard weapons despite over N1Billion budget provision for Prison Biometrics, Arms and Ammunition in the 2020/2021 Capital budget; thus, impeding its ability to deter, prevent or respond effectively to both internal and external threats; the House is aware of deaths of correctional officers and men across the country following attacks either on escort vehicles or custodial facilities;
Also observed that Staff still buys or makes their uniform till date regardless of the huge budget allocations provided for this purpose, provision of uniform for inmates is nonexistence in most Custodial centers;
Report to the House
Further Observed that in addition to allegations of non-utilization of Budget allocations in the manner prescribed by the National Assembly and administrative incompetence of drivers of change in the rebranded Service, there are also claims of unscrupulous staff promotion, denial of rights and benefits including hazard and duty tour allowances levelled against the management of the Service.
” Elumelu explained.
According to the lawmaker, the Arms Squad unit of the service still parades obsolete and substandard weapons despite over 1-billion-naira budget provision for Prison Biometrics, Arms and Ammunition in the 2020 to 2021 Capital budget.
The House, therefore, mandated its Committee on Reformatory Institutions to investigate the allegations and report to the House within twelve weeks for further legislative action.
House of Representatives Probes Correctional Service Fund